Okay, librarians, teachers, book bloggers and book club leaders, here's the scoop. My new novel Vive la Paris (for ages 10 and up) is coming out from Hyperion in about six months. It's the companion novel to Sahara Special, and it jusssst sooooo haaaappppppens that I have several advance reader's copies. If anyone is interested, I'll set up a "reading round robin" by mail. I tried this with my local SCBWI network and it was a lot of fun, so I thought we'd give it a whirl here! Here's how it will work: send me your address by the end of this week using the e-mail on my website (esmeatripcodotcom) with the subject heading "PARIS BLOG ROUND ROBIN" and a little hello so that I know you're the real bookloving McCoy and not a robot. (Note: please do not post your contact info in the comments area below, that's not cybersafe!) Then I'll add you to a list of folks to recieve a copy, and one day, there it will be, sitting in your mailbox! When you're done reading the book, you mail it off to the next person on the list that will be included. If you are running a book club with four or more members, just specify and send me the mailing info for your membership and I'll set up a round robin just for your peeps. Quantities limited! Tell your friends and listservs...I will be honoring requests through Saturday or while supplies last.(Sorry, this offer's just for booksharing grown-ups, but if you're a kid and you want mail, you should definitely check out my Diary of a Fairy Godmother art contest where everybody wins something, or ask a parent to get in on the round robin.)
Now, the first twenty people or so to respond will get a bonus book to read, Amy Timberlake's latest, also due this fall!
From the back flaps of our books:
That Girl Lucy Moon by Amy Timberlake
"Lucy Moon is the kind of girl who loudly supports animal rights during hunting season. She wears a woven hat made of hemp in support of third-world workers. Lucy Moon is the kind of girl who spots injustice and isn't afraid to fight it. So when classmates land a trip to the police station for sledding on Wiggins Hill and the local paper refuses to report it--or the role Miss Ilene Viola Wiggins, the richest woman in town, plays in the arrest--Lucy launches a campaign to fight against corruption in her hometown...Can one person really make a difference?"
Vive la Paris by Esme Raji Codell
"Paris has just come for piano lessons, not chopped-liver sandwiches or French lessons or free advice. But when old Mrs. Rosen gives her a little bit more than she can handle, it might be just what Paris needs to understand the bully in her brother's life, and the bullies of the world. This companion novel to Sahara Special offers a look at what it means to be your brother's keeper, and how we hold on to hope when the world is too much. Rose-colored glasses optional."
Also, editorial comment from me: Amy's book happens to rock. Great mystery, with a social justice underpinning that's just right for middleschoolers today; I thought it depicted kids in that age group in a realistic and positive way. People who liked Katherine Hannigan's Ida B. are going to love Lucy Moon's spunk. I know I wouldn't want to have to wait six months to read this one!
Speaking of getting fun things in the mail, check out the book of the day, now available at bookstores and libraries:
STINK AND THE INCREDIBLE SUPER-GALACTIC JAWBREAKER (FICTION) by Megan McDonald (Candlewick). The brother of series star Judy Moody is back again, and he's mad and not gonna take it anymore, writing a firey letter of complaint to the candy factory that sold him a jawbreaker that failed to break his jaw. When the corporation calms their junior consumer with a ten-pound box of jawbreakers, so begins the great letter-writing campaign. This title inspired my own ten-year-old son to write a letter to the Smarties candy company suggesting that they make bigger candy, and the kind Consumer Relations Manager actually did send him an entire box of oversized Smarties. (Our family and our dentist thank you, sir!) I share this vignette of Wonka-like valor not to inspire solicitation, but to point out this book's power to inspire the letter-writing abilities of intermediate readers. McDonald continues to prove her prowess at capturing the sincere and humorous tone of her characters (and her readership), and tucks in a friendship subplot that is sweet as any candy. (7 and up)
Here is a picture of my best boy Russell at the International Reading Association conference, sharing his hard-earned candy with Stink's illustrator, Peter H. Reynolds (who, incidentally, runs an awesome website as well as his own independent bookstore in Dedham, Massachusetts! Check them out!).
Links are provided for informational use. Don't forget to support your local bookseller.